Join the movement

Join the movement!

Join the movement!

Repairing Racial Inequities in the Music Industry with Artist Manager Jonathan Azu

songtradr-header

Join the movement!

Jonathan Azu The New Music Business Podcast with Ari Herstand

Must Read

How To Get a Record Advance Without a Record Deal

One of the biggest reasons that artists sign with major record labels is for the upfront cash.  The advance is...

Black Postmodern Jukebox Performers Pen Open Letter About Mistreatment

On Thursday, July 16th, in a brave act of solidarity and dissent against their employer, black musicians penned an...

This Music Company Doesn’t Care About Black Lives

#BlackOutTuesday and #TheShowMustBePaused day (started by two black female executives) encouraged everyone in the music industry to take the...
Ari Herstand
Ari Herstand is a Los Angeles based musician, the founder and CEO of Ari’s Take and the author of How to Make It in the New Music Business.
Mending Racial Inequities in the Music Industry w/ Jonathan Azu | New Music Business w/ Ari Herstand

Listen on your favorite podcast platform: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Acast

Today’s episode was recorded live in Los Angeles in my guest’s, Jonathan Azu, backyard. This was the first in-person interview I’ve done since the coronavirus shutdown and we’ve all been locked in quarantine. But Jonathan has a beautiful backyard where we could safely social distance, so we setup there. It was nice to be in the physical presence of somebody for once. I’ve missed that so dearly.

Jonathan Azu is an artist manager for artists like Cory Henry, Luke James, Emily King, and Michelle Williams among others. He used to be the executive vice president and general manager of Red Light Management. He is also a two-time Billboard magazine 40 Under 40 power player. Over a year ago, he launched his own management company called Culture Collective.

We talk about how he shifted his business model now that live touring is shut down. We also talk about how the music industry can be more racially diverse and equitable, specifically how music companies can address the racial inequalities that exist at an executive level but really all levels.

A Forbes 2017 article outlined that hip-hop and R&B genres are responsible for 25% of all music consumption and over 29% of all on-demand streams across the United States. However, executives of color are still relatively scarce atop major music companies. The top 10 out of 10 on the Billboard Power 100 list are all white, and there’s only two people of color in the top 50. Azu breaks this down on why he thinks this is and how to fix it because it’s a problem.


Quick links:

4:20 – How Jonathan Azu and his artists have been doing since touring has been shut down
12:50 – What Azu’s artists are doing in quarantine – how they are staying busy
16:05 – Artists doing live streaming events
18:53 – About Culture Collective and Azu’s journey to get to where he’s at today
29:07 – Advice to white colleagues asking for advice on curbing systemic racism in the music industry
35:33 – About The Black Music Coalition
39:15 – Lack of racial diversification in the Billboard Power 100 list
41:35 – Shifting internships to paid internships and going outside typical recruiting tactics – should there be mentorship programs?
43:18 – Would reparations be the correct route to approach racial injustices in the music industry?
54:08 – Are people losing interest in the black lives matter movement?
59:10 – Was having an all black roster for Culture Collective intentional?
1:05:05 – Azu’s artist Emily King two Grammy nominations

About the Author

Ari Herstand is a Los Angeles based musician, the founder and CEO of Ari’s Take and the author of How to Make It in the New Music Business.

Join the movement!

Advertisement

Podcast

Red Light Manager on When and How to Get Management with Andrew Leib

Listen on your favorite podcast platform: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Acast Welcome to the New Music Business podcast. Today's guest is my good friend,...

Oprah’s Drummer Madame Gandhi on Feminism, Activism, Music Video Budgets as an Indie Artist

Listen on your favorite podcast platform: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Acast Today's guest is with Madame Gandhi (birth name Kiran Gandhi). She's an incredibly inspiring person, an activist, and...

Sexual Harassment, Sexism and Life as a Female DJ in a Male Dominated Field with Dani Deahl

Listen on your favorite podcast platform: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Acast Today's guest is Dani Deahl. She's the music and technology writer for The Verge. In addition to being...

Welcome to The New Music Business with Ari Herstand

Listen on your favorite podcast platform: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Acast Welcome to the New Music Business Podcast! This is my first podcast...

Zaytoven, ‘Godfather of Trap’ on Production in the Age of Coronavirus

Listen on your favorite podcast platform: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Stitcher | Acast This episode is with superstar Grammy-winning producer and "Godfather of Trap," Zaytoven. He is one of the most...
Advertisement

Related Posts